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Posted: April 21, 2014 2:00 p.m.

Schools earn C’s, D's on GA report card

It’s the school’s turn to get graded.

The Georgia Department of Education released the 2012 and 2013 report cards on Monday that show each school’s College and Career Ready Performance Index (CCRPI). Statewide, elementary and middle schools showed an increase in scores, while high schools saw a one-year decrease.

The CCRPI replaced the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) measurement as Georgia’s statewide accountability system in 2012. Schools and school districts are measured on an easy-to-understand 100-point scale, helping parents and the public better understand how schools are performing in a more comprehensive manner than the pass/fail system previously in place under AYP.

“When parents move, rather than just asking their realtor what schools are good, they can actually go see what schools are good,” said Meghan Frick, communications specialist at GA DOE. “For example, if a kid struggles in reading, the parents can look at what levels students at each school are reading at. They can see test scores, everything.”

Since the first “study year” of CCRPI in 2012, the state has received valuable feedback from education partners and the public, leading to a revised and refined report of the 2012 scores. Data making up scores from the 2013 school year was measured using the new calculation, and data making up scores from the 2012 school year was re-measured applying the new methodology.

The updated calculations require schools and districts to meet greater expectations to earn higher scores. School district officials said they had been warned the new calculations may cause a drop in state-wide scores.

“This is an index that is both comprehensive and simple to understand, and it is an important component of our efforts to ensure that all students graduate from high school ready for whatever they choose to do, whether that be going to college, joining the military or immediately beginning a career,” said State School Superintendent John Barge in a press release.

Overall, the Newton County school district earned a 73.4 in 2012 and improved to a 75.2 in 2013. The state-wide score in was 74.1 in 2012 and jumped to 75.8 in 2013. All but five schools (Heard-Mixon Elementary, Live Oak Elementary, Veterans Memorial Middle, Alcovy High, Newton High) showed improvement on the CCRPI report from 2012 to 2013.

A school and district’s overall score can be broken down into three major areas: achievement (60 points), progress (25 points) and achievement gap (15 points). Schools could also receive up to 10 “challenge points,” which are given based on significant numbers of economically disadvantaged students, students who have to learn English as a second language and students with disabilities who meet expectations.

Schools can also receive points for going beyond the CCRPI targets by having students participate in college and career ready programs.

District schools seemed to follow the statewide trend, with elementary and middle schools improving and high schools dropping in scores from 2012 to 2013.

The best-scoring school in 2013 in the county was Newton County Theme School at Fiquett, with the elementary school scoring a 93.8, the middle school scoring a 99.6 and the overall school earning a 95. Its score of 89 also made it the highest-scoring school in 2012.

Newton County elementary schools scored a 71.5 in 2012, which was updated to a 72 with the new calculations. In 2013, elementary schools scored a 77.5, updated to a 78. Elementary schools across the state earned an adjusted 74.9 in 2012 an adjusted 78.5 in 2013.

Middle schools in the district had the lowest scores in 2012, with an original and updated score of 70.1. However, they increased to 76 in 2013, with an updated score of 76.1, jumping ahead of average high school scores. State scores for all middle schools in 2012 was 73.9, improving to 75 (both adjusted scores) in 2013.

District high schools scored a 78.6 original and updated score in 2012, decreasing to an original score of 69.4 and updated score of 69.5 in 2013. High schools state-wide earned an adjusted score of 73 in 2012 and decreased to a 72 in 2013.

“There’s work to be done on schools in Georgia,” Frick said. “Here’s exactly, broken down by indicator, where we need to do improvements for each individual school.”

Frick said the DOE is pleased to see elementary and middle schools improve year after year. However, she said low high school scores may be partly attributed to new algebra tests.

While 2013 math scores in Newton’s three high schools earned failing grades, 2012 scores did not reach above a C plus. In 2012 Mathematics I, 68.1 percent of Alcovy High students scored at Meets or Exceeds levels, with only 56.9 doing so in Mathematics II. At Eastside High, 77.3 percent of students scored at Meet or Exceeds in Mathematics I and 62.6 percent of students scored that well in Mathematics II. Newton High students scoring at that level reached to 68.9 percent in Mathematics I and 51.5 percent in Mathematics II.

With the addition of coordinate algebra and GPS algebra tests in Mathematics I in 2013, scores dropped drastically. Only 23.9 percent of students at Alcovy High, 34.6 percent of students at Eastside High and 20 percent of students at Newton High scored at Meets or Exceeds levels.

All other subjects scored in the 70s-90s.

“Math seems to be a struggle for everyone in Georgia,” said Shakila Henderson-Baker, Newton County Board of Education chair. “We will be questioning what will be put in place to help improve the math scores.”

Henderson-Baker said she wanted to point out these scores are from 2012-2013 and do not include anything that has happened this year. She said programs like the ELT curriculum and college k-12 programs are meant to help students learn about the college environment and opportunity.

“We can’t wait until high school to start getting kids college- and career-ready. We need to help them identify what college is so they’ll be more interested in going, for those kids who have no idea what college is,” Henderson-Baker said.

Regardless of the low scores, NCSS Superintendent Samantha Fuhrey said she was proud of the “hard work and dedication of our school and district staff and leaders.”

“Overall, I am pleased that our schools continue to demonstrate steady improvement, and the district, as a whole, is keeping pace with the rest of the state,” said NCSS Superintendent Samantha Fuhrey. “We pledge to continue to work diligently to ensure our students are well-prepared for options beyond high school.”

District and individual schools’ scores can be found on the Georgia DOE website at http://ccrpi.gadoe.org/2012/ccrpi2012.aspx for 2012 and http://ccrpi.gadoe.org/2013/ccrpi2013.aspx for 2013.

School scores

SCHOOL

2012

2013

Alcovy High School

75.6

69.1

Challenge Charter Academy

46.2 (middle); N/A (high); 20.2 (school)

51.6 (middle); 33.8 (high); 41.1 (school)

Clements Middle School

69.5

83.8

Cousins Middle School

64.5

75.4

East Newton Elementary School

79.7

85.4

Eastside High School

80.2

81.1

Fairview Elementary School

57.2

74.6

Flint Hill Elementary

61.4

69.1

Heard-Mixon Elementary School

83.6

74.3

Indian Creek Middle School

71.2

74.6

Liberty Middle School

74.9

77.2

Live Oak Elementary

77.4

76.9

Livingston Elementary School

67.8

69.9

Mansfield Elementary School

83.4

84.8

Middle Ridge Elementary School

70.5

71.8

Newton County Theme School at Fiquett

89.8 (elementary); 82 (middle); 89 (school)

93.8 (elementary); 99.6 (middle); 95 (school)

Newton High School

78.4

69.8

Oak Hill Elementary School

70.2

72.7

Porterdale Elementary School

52

71.4

 

Percent of students scoring at Meets or Exceeds

SCHOOL

2012 math I

2012 math II

2013 coordinate algebra/GPS algebra/math I

2013 GPS geometry/math II

Other indicators range

Alcovy High School

68.1

56.9

23.9

60.4

80s (2012)

80-90s (2013)

Eastside High School

77.3

62.6

34.6

82.2

80-90s (2012)

80-90s (2013)

Newton High School

68.9

51.5

20

61.1

70-80s (2012)

80s (2013)

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